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Members say they are "compelled" to "address and correct" comments Donnelly made during the debate and have released the following statement:
During a recent Eastern Property Owners Association (EPOA) town hall meeting on January 15th at Stewart School, we feel inaccurate comments were made by Trustee Donnelly which we are compelled to address and correct:
Switching dispatching duties to Firecom has cut between three and three-and-a-half minutes off time of arrival.
Actually response time, prior to Firecom averaged 4 minutes and 22 seconds; since switching to Firecom average response has INCREASED to 5 minutes and 13 seconds.
Past statements, which have contradicted this response time information have been made by various village officials and news sources:
“Many thanks to our fire and police departments for their first class efforts to protect us. This was especially evident when the first firefighters arrived at a home in the eastern section approximately 2 minutes after the alarm was CALLED IN.” Trustee Nick Episcopia, EPOA newsletter January 2008
“We have a 2 minute response time. There are only 2 fire departments on Long Island that are career and volunteer fire departments, manned 7 days a week, Garden City and Long Beach. Fire doubles every minute, and the ability to respond quickly reduces damage.”
Garden City volunteer fire chiefs, WPOA General Meeting minutes January 18, 2011
“Garden City has 80 active volunteer and 36 career firefighters and 3 firehouses with 4 engines, 2 tower ladders and heavy rescue equipment. They are able to respond to any call in Garden City in 2 minutes or less. That, he added is a selling point for commercial business, which gets a discount on their insurance.”
Fire Chief Jim Meehan, WPOA General meeting minutes Sept. 10, 2008
“The Garden City Fire Department has the ability to arrive at the scene of a fire or life threatening emergency in less than three minutes.”
Incorporated Village of Garden City, Annual Report, 2008-2009.
In 2012 there were 5 building fires and with only one being at night.
Actually village records indicate that there were 6 house fires in 2012 with 2 occurring at night. Village records also indicate that since 2007 exactly 50%, 9 of 18, building fires in Garden City were between 8pm and 8am, the exact times the BOT plans to remove career staff from satellite stations.
Fire does not double in size. It depends on the circumstances.
According to the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), several studies on fire growth show that fire does double in size every minute.
It was mentioned that there are 100 volunteer firefighters.
Clarification: According to the ICMA report (page 20) there are only 45 volunteer firefighters trained and certified as structural-interior firefighters, able to enter burning buildings. Many of the remaining volunteers are not capable of being certified, ICMA report page 28
It was mentioned that the 100 volunteer staff had 3,460 hours of training in 2012 and the career staff had 901 hours of training.
According to village records the career staff of 31 fire fighters had 2,909 hours of training in 2012.
It was mentioned that the Long Beach fire Department, also a combination department, responded to 5,000 calls in 2012 and had 17 working fires.
After contacting Long Beach fire officials they have confirmed that of those 5,000 calls 1,300 were fire calls. Garden City responded to 1,654 fire calls in 2012.
According to ICMA, “Thousands of departments, including Garden City and Long Beach, employ a combination of paid and volunteer firefighters. They usually provide “faster service and cost less”-an average of $93 per person in the Northeast in 2003, according to the International City/ County Managers Association, ICMA. Newsday, Nov 3, 2005
We feel it is important to have the facts out in public, as inaccurate data and information can and has lead to cuts in your fire service.
As always, we are proud to serve the Village of Garden City as we have done for over sixty years protecting the lives and property of all its residents.
- Report Recommends Leaving Firehouses Unmanned at Night
- Residents Weigh in on Fire Department Tensions
- GCFD Dispatching Duties Turned Over to Firecom
- Chief Cavarra Speaks Out About ICMA Report, Fire Department Tensions
- Fire Lieutenant: ICMA Report Inaccurate
- Update: Board 'Compelled' to Make Statement on Fire Department Debate
- Career Firefighters: Our Statement Did Not Criticize or Attack
- Board Eliminates Staffing at Satellite Fire Houses
- Residents React to Fire Department Staffing Changes
- Fire Department Debate Dominates Candidates Q&A
- Career Firefighters Break Their Silence